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Cruise Newsletter

Below is a copy of our current cruise newsletter. To subscribe to our weekly newsletter, absolutely free of charge, please click here. To email this newsletter to friends or family, click here. Please note that the FastDeals are subject to availability and sell out quickly.

Dear Vacations To Go Customer,

This week, I'll share how to qualify for special rates when booking a cruise. Vacations To Go customers can sometimes receive exclusive discounts from cruise lines based on specific qualifications, such as region of residence, age, occupation, military service and past guest status.

I have compiled a list of specialty cruises, discounts and resources we offer. Some are available only to certain types of travelers, and others are available to all Vacations To Go customers. Click the links below for more information:

Age 55+ Rates
EMT Discounts
Firefighter Discounts
Hosted Singles Cruises
Interline Rates
Military Rates (U.S. and Canadian)
Past Passenger Rates
Police Discounts
Teachers' Rates

Discount programs like these can be issued or withdrawn at any time by the cruise line, and are not normally combinable with one another. Always tell your Vacations To Go cruise counselor if you qualify for a military or interline discount, are a past passenger of the line you are calling about, or if anyone in the cabin will be 55+, so that he or she can make sure to check for any additional discounts to which you may be entitled.

If you qualify for any of these special discounts and have not already told us about it in My Account, you can click here now to update your Special Discount Eligibility so we will always show you the lowest rate you qualify for when you are browsing our website.

Next, I'd like to show you the latest discounts and special offers we've negotiated with 9 popular cruise lines. The deeply discounted offers below may include free amenities or shipboard credits, which are as good as cash on the ship and can be used for onboard purchases, like spa treatments and shore excursions.

Princess is offering Vacations To Go customers big discounts -- save up to 70%. In addition, receive shipboard credits of up to $135 per cabin, and for a limited time the third and fourth guests pay only port fees and taxes when sharing the same cabin with two adults on select sailings. Get free drinks, Wi-Fi and pre-paid gratuities on select sailings booked at eligible rates. Book by July 31. See dates and prices.

Holland America is offering our customers huge discounts of up to 60% and shipboard credits of up to $250 per cabin on a variety of popular itineraries. Plus, on select sailings, receive all of the following perks on cabins booked at eligible rates: 1) a signature beverage package, including alcoholic drinks, for all guests in the stateroom, 2) a specialty dining package that includes up to three meals at select venues, 3) a free Wi-Fi package for two guests and 4) a shore excursion credit of up to $600 per cabin. Book by July 31. See dates and prices.

Celebrity has reduced rates by up to 85%. Plus, get shipboard credits of up to $250 per cabin on a variety of sailings. Also, receive all of the following perks on select sailings booked at eligible rates: 1) pre-paid gratuities, 2) a free Classic beverage package and 3) unlimited internet access. Book by July 31. See dates and prices.

Seabourn has reduced rates by up to 43%, plus get new exclusive pricing on last-minute cruises and shipboard credits of up to $1,500 per cabin on select departures. The upfront fare of a six-star Seabourn vacation includes gratuities, open bars and fine wines at lunch and dinner. Book by July 31. See dates and prices.

Cunard is offering our customers newly reduced rates on select cruises, for savings of up to 57%. Plus, get shipboard credits of up to $1,500 per cabin on select sailings. Book select suite categories and also receive free drinks and free gratuities on a variety of sailings. Book by August 2. See dates and prices.

Norwegian is offering our customers huge discounts of up to 87% along with free pre-paid gratuities on select balcony and suite cabins and shipboard credits of up to $200 per cabin on some sailings. Plus, cabins booked at eligible rates come with up to 300 minutes of internet and a $50 per cabin shore excursion credit on each excursion booked through the cruise line. The following optional offers that involve additional fees are also available: 1) an unlimited open bar for two, 2) a specialty dining package that includes up to three meals for two guests at select dining venues and 3) friends and family pay only port fees and taxes when sharing the same cabin with two adults on select departures. Book by August 3. See dates and prices.

Royal Caribbean is offering our customers huge new discounts -- save up to 70%. Also, receive exclusive pricing and shipboard credits of up to $50 per cabin on select sailings. Children ages 12 and under pay only port fees and taxes when sharing the same cabin with two adults on select departures. See dates and prices.

Oceania is offering Vacations To Go customers discounts of up to 78%, plus newly reduced rates, a free beverage package, shipboard credits of up to $600 per cabin, a shore excursion credit of up to $1,400 per cabin, free specialty dining and unlimited internet on select sailings. See dates and prices.

Crystal has reduced rates by up to 75% exclusively for customers of Vacations To Go.  Book now and get a $500 onboard credit on select voyages. Pricing includes gratuities, unlimited Wi-Fi, butler service in all suites and guest rooms, two complimentary specialty dining reservations, and all alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. See dates and prices.

Ponant is offering Vacations To Go customers exclusive savings on select departures. Explore destinations such as the Mediterranean, Alaska, the Caribbean, Antarctica, and more! Prices include select shore excursions, gratuities, alcoholic beverages, and unlimited Wi-Fi. See dates and prices.

As always, all offers in this newsletter are for new bookings only and subject to availability. Restrictions may apply, and some free amenities and shipboard credits may apply only to eligible rates. Past guests of some cruise lines may see better rates on select sailings.

Cruise ship ratings exist to help customers find the level of quality they want, and are willing to pay for, at sea. Our ratings range from 1 to 6 stars, with 6 stars representing exceptional quality in every way.

As a general rule, we do not represent or recommend any ship rated less than 3 stars, but occasionally an older ship with an established cruise line might drop below 3 stars before being sold or refurbished.

A 6-star cruise ship is not only the best of the best for seagoing vacations, but in my opinion, it also delivers the highest overall service and quality of any vacation on the planet.

Many elements are considered in rating a ship, including the service level (room steward, waiters, reception desk, etc.), food quality and presentation, the onboard facilities and amenities and the physical condition of the ship's accommodations and public areas.

Some inaccuracy is inherent in the process of assigning a single numerical rating to an entire ship. For example, a vessel might deliver 5-star food service and 4-star entertainment, and a star rating of 4.5 would not perfectly describe either aspect.

Many ships change in ratings over time. An aging ship may decline a half-star or more due to physical condition, and then be brought back to its original condition (and rating) by a major refurbishment. We list the dates of refurbishments on the ship profile pages on our site.

Personal preference also plays a big part in the perception of a ship's overall quality. After receiving hundreds of thousands of post-cruise surveys, I can say that even the most experienced cruisers do not agree on a ship's rating. One person may place the most importance on the dining experience, while another may be more focused on children's programs, including facilities and counselors.

Still, the imperfect rating system is the best method for comparing one ship to another in the selection process, and you can see all of our ship ratings by clicking here. Our ratings are based on industry standards, the personal experience of our more than 1000 employees, and the surveys and feedback we receive from our customers.

Today, I've gathered all the best deals according to ship rating, for sailings in the next 90 days. Keep in mind that prices reflect the ship's quality, and whatever rating you select, you'll be getting the best vacation value for your money.

Click any link below to see for yourself.

Save up to 87% on the best deals in the next 90 days, by ship rating:

6-star ships (Exceptional)
5- and 5.5-star ships (Excellent)
4- and 4.5-star ships (Very Good)
3- and 3.5-star ships (Good)

Along with oceangoing cruises, Vacations To Go also offers the world's largest selection of river cruises in Europe, the U.S. and other destinations. (We have an incredible assortment of guided tours and all-inclusive resorts as well.)

On a river cruise, you'll enjoy scenic views while sailing on a beautifully appointed ship to cities and towns along the river. The upfront price of the trip is highly inclusive, covering accommodations, meals and beverages, guided excursions and more. Complimentary beer and wine are often provided with lunch and dinner, and some companies offer all alcoholic beverages served at any time at no additional cost.

Below is a list of popular rivers for cruising. Click any link to see terrific offers, such as discounts of up to 70% off the regular price in some cases, or search for cruises.

Amazon River
Europe Rivers (All)
   Bordeaux Waterways
   Danube River
   Douro River
   Dutch & Belgian Waterways
   Rhine River
   Rhone River
   Seine River
Mekong River
Nile River
USA Rivers (All)
   Columbia River
   Mississippi River

You can also use our exclusive Custom Search tool to find your ideal cruise on the above rivers and others.

Here are today's Top 10 Cruises, brand-new specials from the world's best cruise lines. Click the FastDeal # for details.

1) Caribbean, 7 nights on Royal Caribbean, departs New Orleans Oct 26, starting at $514, save 61%, FastDeal # 39373

2) Eastern Canada & New England, 7 nights on Holland America, departs Boston Oct 5, starting at $794, save 58%, FastDeal # 15784

3) Caribbean, 7 nights on Norwegian, departs New Orleans Oct 27, starting at $834, save 75%, FastDeal # 32869

4) Greek Islands, 9 nights on Celebrity, departs Athens (Piraeus) Oct 26, starting at $1,047, save 78%, FastDeal # 37872

5) Alaska, 11 nights on Princess, departs San Francisco Sep 13, starting at $1,428, save 46%, FastDeal # 28689

6) British Isles, 12 nights on Cunard, departs Southampton Aug 30, starting at $1,349, save 51%, FastDeal # 24811

7) Caribbean, 7 nights on Disney, departs Port Canaveral Aug 31, balcony starting at $1,681, FastDeal # 47880 (Disney does not provide brochure rates for this cruise, so we are unable to show a savings percentage.)

8) Mediterranean, 7 nights on Azamara, departs Barcelona Sep 21, starting at $2,009, save 53%, FastDeal # 19217

9) Northern Europe, 7 nights on Seabourn, departs Reykjavik Aug 3, suite starting at $2,799, save 52%, FastDeal # 21574

10) Alaska, 7 nights on Regent, departs Anchorage (Seward) Aug 28, suite starting at $6,749, save 64%, FastDeal # 22728

To search for discounts of up to 85% on cruises, use our Find a Bargain tool.

Once you've found a FASTDEAL, call us at 800-338-4962 (US and Canada) and a cruise counselor will attend to your needs. International customers, please email or call us at +1-713-974-2121.

Please email me your comments, suggestions and questions at alanfox@vacationstogo.com and I will respond the same day.


Alan Fox
Executive Chairman
Vacations To Go